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Fallen: Familiar foe, familiar result 

Birmingham: Olympics silver medallist PV Sindhu let history slip out of her hands as she lost an epic semifinal against world No. 2 Akane Yamaguchi of Japan to bow out of the All England Championship here today.

On the cusp of history, Sindhu failed to build on a handsome lead in the decider to go down 21-19 19-21 18-21 to Yamaguchi after battling for an hour and 19 minutes. This was the ninth victory on the trot for the 20-year-old Japanese, who had won the German Open earlier this month.

In scenes similar to the one that went down to the wire in the summit clash of last year’s Dubai Super Series Final, both Sindhu and Yamaguchi threw themselves on the court, traversing diagonally again and again during a series of punishing rallies, which defined the edge-of-the-seat thriller.

However, in the end it was Yamaguchi who showed better nerves to walk away with the match and cement a place in the final against world No. 1 Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan.

Despite being on the court for almost three-and-a-half hours during the three-game matches in the last three days, Sindhu didn’t show any sign of fatigue and matched the nimble-footed Yamaguchi as they looked to outdo each other. But a slight lapse of concentration in the dying moments cost Sindhu the match.

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